#PMChallenge - Notification Mirroring to desktop with Universal Clipboard

  1. DhruvMisra
    Donut Feb 7, 2019

    DhruvMisra , Feb 7, 2019 :
    Hi there! Thanks a lot OnePlus for giving us a platform like this and even more so for this opportunity to put forward our ideas.

    Have you missed some important information on the phone while working tirelessly on your laptop? Maybe a design change that you couldn’t incorporate in time, or cancellation of a module. And how tedious it can be when you have to copy the OTP from your phone to the PC.
    Notifications are a blessing, but not receiving them on time, or at the right place can quickly turn this boon into a bane. Hmm, only if there was a feature to help me out with this. Let’s ponder.

    The problem and who are the users?
    Everyone, once in a while, has this problem where they have to constantly check their phone for the work they’re doing on their computer. Most of the times it requires copying of some essential information from the phone. This affects the workflow and reduces productivity.
    As proud OnePlus owners, we love speed but more often than not this problem hinders us.

    The users: Almost every individual who is currently working or studying. (The age-group where OnePlus devices are most popular)

    What is the proposed feature?
    A system utility service which would mirror the notifications from the device to a desktop PC through a browser extension (capable of running in the background) or a lightweight software.​
    • Important apps would push notifications as a pop-up.
    • With each notification would be the default reply options provided by the app and an option to dismiss, giving the user complete control over the notifications remotely.
    • Added to this would be the ability to copy something on your computer and having it available on your device’s clipboard and vice versa.
    • Considering the information being sent between the devices could be sensitive, all communications should follow end-to-end encryption.
    What is the user value? Also does it contribute to a burdenless experience?
    These simple yet effective features will allow users to have a streamlined workflow.​
    • Users will have a central workstation to interact with all their notifications, giving them the capability of using two devices in one.
    • Universal clipboard will open a world of possibilities. Users will be able to open links directly on their phone. Information sharing will be more efficient with the user having to make less clicks to get the result, which in turn allows faster completion of work.
    • Users also won’t have to worry about network attacks. Safety is assured with data encryption.
    • All of this without having to install different third-party apps or compromising aesthetics and storage.
    • Additionally, being the only company to implement these features in the OS would attract a large audience.
    Okay time to go full technical guys.
    How will different parts of the existing OS interact with this new feature?
    Apart from two new settings being added and a service running in the background, the rest of the OS would remain the same.

    The logic behind the product and how I want it to be implemented:
    I have created some mockups of the Settings and the Browser through screenshots and Photoshop. I hope the UX team doesn’t mind my blatant designs. :p

    For implementation of notification mirroring, a small app without a UI or a service can be created. The essential options would be baked into the settings app along with a toggle to enable it.
    When enabled, a background process would run at all times to keep track of the notifications and post them to the browser extension. Actions performed on the browser would be handled by this service as well.​
    Mirror Settings.png

    The browser extension would be a basic drop-down with the list of notifications along with appropriate actions.​
    chrome ext.png

    The extension would have the ability to run in the background, even if the browser is closed. This will allow for Push Notifications on Windows.​
    example final.png

    NOTE: To stop an annoying notification for some time, an app-specific snooze button can be placed in the extension.

    The universal clipboard can be implemented with a series of share commands between the devices. For instance, the extension can include an option to share and save the current contents of the desktop clipboard to the device clipboard.​
    chrome ext info.png

    Similarly, the device can have a ‘Share to PC’ option when text is highlighted.​
    sharing options.png

    This should also be a toggle-able utility in the settings.​
    Clipboard Settings.png

    To sum up the settings app, here’s a simple flowchart:​

    Existing comparable functions in smartphone industry. How is this proposition superior?
    Third-party apps like PushBullet, Join, AirDroid allow these functionalities already. Even Microsoft Cortana has a similar feature.​
    • The problem with these apps is lack of proper design and buggy performance. There is an app I particularly loved for the design, called Crono. But the buggy performance ruined the functionality.
    • Another problem with third-party apps is that they need to be kept alive in the memory explicitly. This leads to a persistent notification in the status bar which to be honest is straight-up annoying.
    • Most apps also require unnecessary permissions. I used some apps, which even after being granted notification access and persistent notification, stopped mirroring notifications after some time.
    • Lastly, most of these apps are paid and require a subscription for proper working.
    Why is native support for notification mirroring better?
    • Can create a lightweight service which would be RAM friendly and wouldn’t require unnecessary permissions.
    • Will be able to run indefinitely in the background without an annoying persistent notification or the user having to restart the app.
    • Would save storage by baking only the requisite features into the settings and not having to create a new UI for the app.
    • Could maintain encryption standards which might be ignored by third-party apps.
    • Easily scalable: More interesting features can be added easily such as a File Dash to PC, opening links directly in other devices, etc.
    Thank you so much everyone who read this thread. <3
    For those who were too lazy like me, the title and images should give you the idea in a nutshell. :)
    Thanks for checking it out. Never Settle.
    Would love to get a review.

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019

  2. G_Suraj_Parui_tlzZ
    Eclair Feb 7, 2019

    G_Suraj_Parui_tlzZ , Feb 7, 2019 :
    Heya! Just was surfing though the submissions. I must say dayum these (photoshopped?) images look amazing! The idea is great on paper and the only thing that could hold it back is just the implementation (and maintenance by the oneplus team) Overall a great idea but I don't know the logistics of keeping a service like this alive. Anyway great work, it would ne awesome if you can check my submission and gimme a review too (No pressure)

    DhruvMisra likes this.
  3. Sridhar Ananthanarayanan
    Lollipop Feb 7, 2019

    Last edited: Feb 7, 2019

  4. Cannothas
    Froyo Feb 7, 2019

    Cannothas , Feb 7, 2019 :
    I also want EXACTLY this, and was hoping someone put it in this terminology already! Wanna use this awesome device as a desktop replacement!!! Yeah!

    DhruvMisra likes this.
  5. KeepTransisting
    The Lab - OnePlus 7 Pro Reviewer Feb 7, 2019

  6. DhruvMisra
    Donut Feb 8, 2019

  7. KeepTransisting
    The Lab - OnePlus 7 Pro Reviewer Feb 8, 2019

    KeepTransisting , Feb 8, 2019 :
    Oh, I saw, but the problem is that maintaining something like this has a cost to it. Expecting an OEM to do it for free without a subscription is extremely unlikely

    DhruvMisra likes this.
  8. DhruvMisra
    Donut Feb 8, 2019

    DhruvMisra , Feb 8, 2019 :
    Sure, I understand that it's not something easy to maintain. But apps like AirDroid offer mirroring for free so I feel OnePlus might be able to as well. Also I'm not suggesting OnePlus to implement exactly this, it's an idea open to changes and if they end up including a similar (cost-effective) feature in their upcoming build, I'd call it a win.

  9. KeepTransisting
    The Lab - OnePlus 7 Pro Reviewer Feb 8, 2019

    KeepTransisting , Feb 8, 2019 :
    And apps like AirDroid constantly collect your data.

    There's a reason things are free, and you usually need to be wary of them

  10. DhruvMisra
    Donut Feb 8, 2019

    DhruvMisra , Feb 8, 2019 :
    I see. Well it's just a feature I always wanted native in the OS. Let's see how it pans out. Thanks for the review though.